Gah! I love lifestyle newborn sessions. Welcoming a new member to your family is so exciting and I absolutely love helping clients document the love and excitement! For my newborn clients, we schedule in-home lifestyle sessions so we can capture the little one in their new home, with the family and the nursery and get to show the new life your family is enjoying!
When you’ve just had a baby (whether it’s your first or fifth!) the idea of having a photographer come into your home can sound intimidating, but fret not! I have some suggestions and tips for making the session easy-breezy. Plus, y’all know I’m chill, so we’re going to have a lovely time – I promise!
WATCH THE SUN! Leading up to your session, watch the natural light in your home so we can determine what time of day it is best to photograph your newborn session. I am a natural light photographer and prefer to use natural light only – I will probably turn off any artificial lights like overhead lights and try to avoid using my flash too. Since my goal for your session will be to use natural light only, it’s really important that we schedule your lifestyle newborn session at a time when it is the brightest in your home. How can you prep for this?
KEEP THAT BABY AWAKE! If possible, it would be great if you can keep your baby awake 1-2 hours before we start the session. It’s also ideal to schedule the baby’s feeding about 2-3 hours before our session so you can feed him/her again just before the session starts. A tired baby with a full tummy results in a very sleepy baby and cooperative model. It might sound crazy but if you can also feed your baby as much as you can the 12 hours before the session it will also help! That way baby will be really full and sleepier!
NO SALSA FOR MOM! If mom is nursing I always advise to avoid spicy foods or drinking/eating acid citrus juices and fruits as these foods can upset the baby’s stomach and they will feel uncomfortable and not sleep. For bottle-fed babies make sure to have extra formula ready to last throughout our session.
CAN I GET A TOUR? The first thing I do when I arrive for your session, after I gush over your adorable little love, I ask for a house tour. I’d love if you could show me the master bedroom and nursery area so I can plan out the session right at the beginning. During the tour, I’ll check out the natural light and determine what photographs I want to shoot in what areas. I also keep my eye out for other areas in your home that have great light, such as on a staircase or in your living room, and am mindful of other photo opportunities that the uniqueness of the your home allows.
OUTFITS! Don’t fret about outfits and what to have your baby wear, same goes for you and your spouse! I want everyone to be comfortable and relaxed! For new moms I recommend looser fitting tops or dresses so you don’t feel self-conscious. Girl, you just had a baby, I don’t want you worrying about shopping! We’ll shoot sitting and standing so as long as you’re comfortable – that’s what matters! I advise that you avoid any clothing with logos/brand names on them or any neon colors as they can cast color shades onto skin.
PACIFIER! A pacifier can be a total lifesaver, so make sure to have some handy!
TIME! My newborn sessions usually run between 1-2 hours, allowing enough time for feedings and changings throughout the session. One of the things I have found most helpful is that it is easier to allow time for the baby to be fed and changed throughout the session than to try and photograph a fussy baby. Taking 5 minutes for a little break every once in a while to keep everyone happy is the best!
RELAX! Bottomline? Whether your baby is awake, asleep, fussy, happy, or all of the above, we’re going to capture some wonderful memories because this is an exciting time for your family!